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Obion police chief plans to retire

Obion police chief plans to retire
Staff Reporter
Obion is facing the process of hiring a new police chief and replacing one of its police officers.
Police officer Jimmy Wilson’s resignation was accepted by the Obion city council Monday night and longtime Police Chief Royce Aker announced he will retire effective May 31.
“I’m getting ready to retire,” Aker told the board near the end of Monday’s meeting.
His announcement marks Obion County’s third police chief to retire in the past year. Union City Police Chief Joe Garner retired and Troy Police Chief James Cleek recently announced his retirement.
Obion has a police committee that will handle the process of finding a replacement for Wilson and Aker.
The police committee consists of Jason Moore, Terry Ledbetter and Renee Webber.
Also during Monday’s hour-and-10-minute meeting, the council tackled a 17-item agenda highlighted by a series of bids, an audit report, a pair of ordinances and four resolutions.
The council accepted an $8,020 bid for the former City Hall property at Seventh and Main streets. The winning bid was submitted by B&R Mini Stor-age, which is owned by Tim Blackley and Bob Reavis. A $10 bid for a lot at 509 East Main St. was accepted from Lamont and Tammy Foggie.
The council also approved a $2,838 bid from CAM Electric to do the electrical work and install an air conditioning unit at the Obion Public Safety Building. A $2,372.22 bid from Obion Glass was approved to install a new awning on the building and a $994 bid from Lanzer’s Printing & Office Supply Co. for furniture for the building was approved.
The city will advertise for bids to provide asphalt for the 2013 calendar year and will seek bids for the city’s 2005 police patrol car. Bids for both items are expected to be considered at the board’s March meeting.
Under the category of city ordinances, the council approved on the first of two readings a new policy prohibiting the use of engine compression brakes (jake brakes) in the city limits and also granted preliminary approval to a new ditching policy.
The ditching policy puts into motion a citywide campaign to clear out clogged ditches, which means the replacement of deteriorating culverts around town. Residents whose culverts have to be replaced can have the work done by the city, but will be required to pay for a new culvert on their property. The cost of the new culvert can be covered by monthly payments spread over a one-year period, according to the policy.
Both ordinances will come up for second and final approval at the council’s March meeting.
Under the category of resolutions, the council approved two resolutions allowing the city to purchase a 2013 Ford F-150 truck from Union City Ford for $17,426. A third resolution corrected a minor clerical error in the city’s budget and a fourth resolution allows the city to opt out of the state building code standards.
The opt out resolution allows the city to use Gibson Electric Membership Corporation to handle building inspections and building permits for new one- and two-family residences, rather than using a state certified building inspector. Mayor Rodney Underwood said other local governments have also chosen to opt out, including Obion County, Troy and Newbern.
In other action, the council:
• Accepted a 2011-12 city audit report presented by Joe Enoch.
Enoch’s audit took up 25 minutes of the hour-and-10-minute board meeting as he went through the 57-page audit in great detail. He said his accounting firm has given the city a “clean audit”  and he announced “everything was in good shape.”
The audit report detailed the city’s assets and liabilities and outlined income and expenses for the 2011-12 fiscal year. Enoch identified “some deficiencies” but said they were not serious concerns. Underwood announced he is working on implementing some changes to the city’s accounting system.
One issue that was brought up during the audit report was the significant reduction in the city’s natural gas revenue during the 2011-12 fiscal year. The drop in revenue was blamed on the mild winter.
• Was informed by Underwood the city’s new handheld utility meter reader has arrived and is currently in use.
“Pretty much, everything else is running pretty smooth,” Underwood said at the start of Monday’s meeting.
Published in The Messenger 2.5.13

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